New InsurTech rescues music festival from financial nightmare amidst storm chaos

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At the back end of 2023, Vento settled a £315,000 claim for RALLY Festival, a new and popular day festival in London, which suffered a shortfall of revenue. But here’s the catch – no one thought it was a claim.

RALLY Festival was set up by co-founders Jonny Edwards and Giles Napier, and took place on the 5th of August 2023, in Southwark Park, London. Their (Event Cancellation) insurance had been organised before this with Vento – a new Event-focused InsurTech founded by Event Organiser, Sparrow, and software developer, Gore, in 2023.

Many will remember the terrible weather the UK experienced last summer and the impact this had on outdoor plans. On the morning of the 5th August 2023, RALLY festival organisers faced every outdoor event organisers’ ‘ biggest fear… Extreme weather on the day of the festival. Storm Antoni was causing havoc with lightning forecast for the afternoon of the event. Consequently, it was deemed unsafe by local authorities to let the public into the festival site, meaning RALLY festival was unable to open its gates at 11.30am as planned. Ticket holders were alerted of the issue via social media, and told to stand by for further updates. The festival had been set for a big last-minute surge of tickets and a subsequent sell-out of 10,000 tickets, but this weather caused people to hesitate to buy. Fortunately, the weather settled by 1pm at which point the festival gates were opened. Ticket holders flocked to the site and over 8000 attendees were able to have a fantastic time for the remainder of the festival. Despite the weather, the event proved to be a huge success for attendees.

However, after the event, the festival organisers realised they had suffered a significant shortfall of bar revenue due to the late opening of their gates, as well as little to no walk-ups due to the terrible rain, leaving them with a huge £315k financial loss and an inordinate amount of distress. Speculatively, RALLY co-founder Edwards called up Vento, their insurance provider, to ask whether they had grounds to submit a claim. All of Edward’s peers in the industry were certain it would not be a claim, as the site ended up being open for the majority of the day. Vento reviewed the terms and conditions of the insurance policy very closely and felt Edwards had a claim. Event ‘Curtailment’ (as well as Cancellation) as a result of extreme weather was technically covered under the policy. After some negotiation around the interpretation of the definition of ‘Curtailment’, Vento was able to reassure Edwards with the good news that their Event Cancellation policy would cover their loss. Consequently, the RALLY co-founders were entitled to a £315,000 payout – £100,000 of which was paid within a matter of days, and the remainder settled once all the required evidence had been provided. As a result, Vento saved the new festival hundreds of thousands of pounds, showcasing the power of comprehensive insurance.

Jonny Edwards, RALLY Co-founder: “We never really thought we would have issues with the weather in August. When Storm Antoni hit we were in a bit of a panic but determined not to cancel. In the end, we got most of the day and still got a £315k insurance settlement (which saved our business). The Vento team were professional, reassuring, and efficient all the way through the process.”

Lucy Gore, Co-founder at Vento: “Insurance doesn’t need to be complicated, it just needs to do what it says on the tin. It’s been fantastic to be able to do exactly that for this particular event. In 2024 we want to improve these processes from a tech perspective; speeding up the ability to buy insurance and make a claim, and continuing to be a support for clients when they need it most.”

Freddie Sparrow, Co-founder at Vento “Having had to cancel my second music festival in its first year, I so understand the financial and psychological implications it can have on event organisers and promoters. I sadly had no insurance on that occasion but am delighted that Vento has had such a positive impact on a music festival in our first few months of trading. Given the amount of unpredictable weather around, we suspect we are going to be in for a busy 2024!”.

Please note: This is a promotional feature